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Hot Cargo

Hot Cargo(1946)

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Remind Me

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Joe Harkness and Chris Bigelow, former tank corps soldiers, go to the Pacific Northwest to fulfill their dead comrade Paul Chapman's final wishes. Among the items on Paul's list is his wish that one of his pals kiss lumberwoman Jerry Walters, whom he described as "smart as a whip." After fulfilling all but two of Paul's directives, which include throwing tomatoes at a policeman, Chris is elected to kiss Jerry, who owns and operates a lumber company. Jerry's initial response is to slap Chris, but she softens after learning that the kiss was sent with love from her old friend Paul. Chris, a botanist, is delighted to discover that Jerry is attractive, and no longer feels the urge to rush home, as does Joe, who wishes to resume his career as a baseball pitcher. Chris and Joe then fulfill Paul's final wish by visiting his family. They are surprised to find that the Chapman trucking business, about which Paul constantly bragged, has been reduced to two broken-down trucks. Although Paul's mother and younger brother Pete welcome them warmly, Paul's father Tim is brought home in an ambulance with a broken shoulder. Chris and Joe then learn that Warren Porter's new trucking business competes with the Chapmans', and that Porter's manager, Matt Wayne, has foreclosed on the Chapmans as they cannot make their truck payments. Chris and Joe decide to stay on at the Chapmans' to help the family regain their business and take over driving the trucks. However, Chris and Joe are treated poorly by their business associates because they lack regular contracts. Although Chris starts to date Jerry out of genuine feelings for her, she assumes that he has only been using her after he asks her to give the Chapmans a contract. Porter, who has been dating Jerry, becomes jealous of Chris, and worries that he will ruin his own chances of obtaining Jerry's mill. When the Chapmans' business does not improve, Joe convinces Jerry to offer them a contract on a new stand of trees. As a result, Porter orders Wayne to get rid of Chris and Joe. After Joe and Chris land in jail for fighting with Wayne and striking an officer, they are bailed out by a sympathetic bar owner. Although Chris has been acting jealous because of Joe's successful deal with Jerry, Joe nevertheless fixes the brakes on Chris's truck as a favor to him. When the brakes fail and Pete is killed in the ensuing accident, Joe blames himself, but the Chapmans are philosophical about the loss of their remaining son. Chris and Joe soon determine that someone sabotaged the brakes after Joe worked on them, and Chris suspects that the person who sideswiped him on the road the same night is responsible. They confront Porter, whose car has been fitted with a new fender, and he tells them that Wayne drove his car, then sends them to see the sheriff. Although Porter advises Wayne to leave town, Wayne refuses to go until Porter pays him off. Wayne then takes Jerry hostage after she overhears his conversation. Wayne's stenographer later sends the sheriff, Chris and Joe to Porter and Wayne's meeting place at an old lodge, and they arrive after Wayne has shot Porter for short-changing him. A gunfight between Wayne and the sheriff ensues, and when Joe demonstrates that his pitching arm is still good by throwing a baseball and knocking a gun out of Wayne's grasp, he and Chris drive a bulldozer into the lodge to free Jerry. Wayne is arrested, and Chris and Jerry reunite. Joe then plans to resume his career in Chicago.